BENGUET Electric Cooperative (Beneco) assured there will be no disconnection for outstanding balance after Baguio and Benguet were placed on enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
Engineer Melchor Licoben, the newly appointed Beneco general manager, assured consumer-members of the electric cooperative will be given leeway in paying their bills since Luzon was placed on ECQ mid-March.
“Consumer-members will be given four months to pay their April and May billing while for June, consumers will be given 30 days to pay their bills,” Licoben added.
Beneco’s board of directors earlier approved the discounts under their "Pantawid Liwanag" program that will benefit 178,545 of the 206,000 consumer accounts.
For April, consumers who used 30 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity and below will not have to pay their bill while those who consumed 31 to 100 kWh will get a P100 discount.
For May, consumers who used 101 to 200 kWh will enjoy a P100 discount. Residential consumer accounts whose consumption will be from 201 to 300 kWh in May will also get a P100 discount, but only if the collection efficiency of Beneco will be favorable.
Beneco's subsidy for the "Pantawid Liwanag" will cost around P15.48 million for the 178,545 consumer accounts based on the latest membership data.
The electric coop in April bill had 56,349 lifeline accounts consuming 30 kWh and below who received free electricity and 26,049 lifeline consumer accounts that used 31 to 50 kWh and received the P100 discount.
In May, 45,975 residential consumer accounts that used 51 to 100 kWh and another 37,826 that consumed 101 to 200 kWh will enjoy the PHP100 subsidy.
An additional 12,346 residential consumer accounts whose consumption in May will be from 201 to 300 kWh might also get the P100 discount.
The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) earlier allotted P15.8 million subsidy to the electric cooperative for the roll-out of the "Pantawid Liwanag" program.
ERC encouraged the country’s electric cooperatives to help consumers cope with the adverse impact of the ECQ through subsidy.